Why is this important?
Your prepayment meter is faulty
It's important that a faulty prepayment meter is repaired or replaced quickly. Otherwise you could be left without any gas or electricity.
This page explains what to do if your pre-payment meter is faulty.
Top tipsRemember, if your supplier doesn’t send an engineer to repair your prepayment meter within a set time period, you should be entitled to a compensation payment under the Guaranteed Standards Scheme
How to tell if there is a problem with the meter
If a prepayment meter breaks, the screen may stay blank or it may show a flashing message, such as error, call help or battery. This means there's probably a problem with the meter itself, not the card or key that goes in it. Tell your supplier straight away, if this happens.
If you report a problem with a gas meter between 8am and 8pm on a working day, or 9pm and 5pm on other days, your supplier must send someone to repair or replace the meter within four hours.
If you report the problem outside these hours, you may have to wait longer.
If your supplier doesn't sort it out within the time and the meter is found to be faulty, they should pay you £22 compensation. This is called a guaranteed standard.
If you report a problem with an electricity meter between 7am and 7pm on a working day, the supplier must send someone to repair or replace the meter within three hours of you reporting it.
At other times, the supplier must send someone within four hours.
If they don't and the meter turns out to be faulty, the supplier should pay you £22 compensation. This is called a guaranteed standard.
Is the problem with the card or token?
If the display on your meter says something like card not accepted, the card you are using will not work.
Try wiping the card clean and start again. If the card or key still doesn't work, contact your supplier and tell them. They will probably send a new card or key by post, although you may be able to get a temporary replacement card from your local pay point.
If you run out of gas or electricity before the key or card arrives, contact your supplier who will arrange to put emergency credit on the meter. The amount will be taken off your new card next time you put money on it. Remember to take this into account when you top up your card or you could be left short again.
Not happy with your supplier’s response
If you are unhappy with the way your energy supplier has dealt with the problem or you are left without gas and electricity because of a faulty prepayment meter, contact the Citizens Advice consumer helpline.
More information about
- More information on the Guaranteed Standards scheme for energy suppliers
- More information about paying for energy with a prepayment meter